Companies weren’t the only ones trying to figure out remote work in 2020. All in-person events were canceled – including school classes. So, universities, colleges, high schools, and other educational institutions needed to find a way to teach classes online, while making sure their students were still doing the work instead of watching Netflix during Zoom classes.
Strangely enough, a time tracking software, or an app to track work hours turned out to be the perfect solution. Let’s see how an app that was intended for companies, found its place in online schooling, and how it can improve your online classes
The Original Use of Time Tracking
Originally, time tracking apps were created with companies in mind. They’re used to track time on projects and tasks, but at the same time, the software provides employers with information about the app and website usage.
Companies use these apps to track productivity, improve project estimates, discover bottlenecks in the processes, and so much more.
With all employees working from home in the past year, time trackers have become an integral part of every manager’s toolbox. But, some online teachers have found a way to incorporate these tools into their daily classes.
Online teachers have realized that this setup of projects and tasks can easily translate into courses (subjects) and classes. In this scenario, each subject is a project, every class on that subject is a task within a specific project. Employees are students, and Managers are teachers.
Every teacher manages one project, and their job is to create tasks within and assign students to them. Each task should be named differently, to reflect the topic that will be discussed during the class.
Students should have the tracker installed with the lightest privacy settings. This means that they should be able to control the tracker and turn it off and on as necessary.
As a teacher, you can also divide apps and websites used as productive or unproductive. If you’re using this option, you’ll have information about your students’ productivity levels – a handy metric when you want to add extra credit or evaluate your curriculum.
Tracking Classes With an App to Track Work Hours
Every time a new class starts, your students should clock in and start tracking the time on the appropriate task (class). On the manager dashboard, you’ll see in real-time who is online and in attendance, making it easier to keep track of attendees.
Once the class is done, you can analyze the data to see if your students were actually following your class or spending time on YouTube. This is a useful metric if you want to give extra credit to the students who paid the most attention, or those who actively participated in class discussions. On the other hand, it can help you discover if your classes are engaging enough. If a large portion of your students spends time creating their Amazon wishlist – you’re probably doing something wrong.
Avoid the Scolding
We advise you to ignore the small amount of unproductivity – nobody can stay 100% focused every day, during every class. University is stressful enough without you scolding your students about every single minute they weren’t paying attention in class.
However, if you do notice that unproductivity levels are unusually high for some students, or that they’ve been skipping classes a lot – try to have an open conversation with them. Let them know what you’ve noticed, and check in to see if they have a particular problem that’s stopping them from giving their best.
It might seem confusing in the beginning, but an app to track work hours is an excellent tool for teachers and students. It will take some time to set it up, and figure out what are the best ways to use the data this software provides, but once you do – you’ll never go back.